Text neck is an injury you get from holding your neck in a downward position for too long. It is most often caused by looking down to text too much but it can also come from looking down at an iPad, laptop or other devices. Text neck is very painful. I have personally had text neck and had to seek medical treatment for it. These are some of the secrets of recovering from it.
1. Shift Your Phone
If you use your phone or other electronic device a lot, you need to hold it higher to prevent text neck. Move your phone upward so that you don’t have to bend your neck. Holding it more in front of you than downward saves you from holding your neck down for too long. It takes a bit of adjusting to get used to this but it is very helpful. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
2. Raise Your Screen
If you ended up with text neck from looking down at a laptop too long like I did, this tip can make a world of difference. Instead of sitting on your comfy couch, you probably need to move to a desk or table. This move should raise your laptop up a bit. If it still isn’t out in front of you, raise it up by using a laptop riser or stand. If this makes typing uncomfortable, add a separate keyboard.
3. Practice Good Posture
Good posture is a huge factor in preventing and treating text neck. It is easy to get into the habit of slouching and not sitting or standing correctly. This is something you have to retrain yourself to do. It will take time to retrain yourself to use correct posture. A helpful hint is to place a rolled up towel behind your lower back when you are sitting at your desk to nudge you in the direction of good posture. A good reminder to give yourself is to hold your head up and your shoulders back.
4. Take an anti-Inflammatory Medication
An anti-inflammatory medication can help relieve pain and inflammation. NSAIDS are a better choice for this injury than regular Tylenol is. Tylenol can help with pain but not with inflammation. Of course you always want to follow your doctor’s recommendations here. Be sure to check with them before you take any new medication.
5. Try Some Ice or Heat
Ice or heat can be very helpful in dealing with text neck. Some doctors say to alternate both so you will have to check with yours. I personally found ice to be most effective when I was dealing with the worst of my text neck. My doctor explained that this was because ice temporarily reduces blood flow to the area, giving you some relief. If you don’t have a true ice pack on hand, a bag of peas wrapped in a towel works great.
6. See Your Doctor
There comes a point when you need to see a doctor for your text neck. If these measures aren’t helping, it’s time. There are other medications that your doctor can prescribe to help you. There are also other things they can suggest for you to do. This may be what it takes to get you feeling better.
7. Get in to Physical Therapy
Physical therapy can do a lot to help you heal from a severe case of text neck. It is a commitment and an investment of time but the results can be amazing. Physical therapy was what made the biggest difference for me. It helps your neck strengthen and recover.
Do you have any symptoms of text neck? Do you have any tips for dealing with it? Please share them here.